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The Girl Chewing Gum 1976
Description: At Stamford Street in Dalston Junction of east London, the camera follows pedestrians, vehicles and birds while a narrator, who appears to be the director behind the camera, seems to instruct the objects.
Released: 02 Feb 2011 Director: John Smith Writers: N/A Actors: N/A Genres: Short, Comedy
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See Джон Сміт Дівчина з жувальною on youtube.

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See Girl Chewing Gum by John Smith on youtube.

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See the girl chewing gum on youtube.

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See The Girl Chewing Gum on youtube.

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See the girl chewing gum on youtube.

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The Girl Chewing Gum Reviews:

On a busy London Street, video installation artist John Smith directs a stage the exact method that he wants it. As his 'cast' come and go in front of his camera he directs them in a constant narration, saying them exactly what he wants them to do. As he moves his camera around he demands increasing control over his environment and obedience from his topics – be they people, cars, trucks, birds, clocks or buildings!For the first several mins of this short movie I did now think that things were event in response to Smith's instructions, but then he order the large hand of a clock to transport at the rate of one revolution per hour and the smaller hand to transport at the rate of one revolution each twelve hours – then he got into birds and trucks and I got the joke (what can I tell – I'm slow!). This was now cute funny at the begin but after a while the joke worn a bit thin as it was basically the same thing over again – it would have been better if the movie had been 5/6 mins long, 10/11 was just too long for such a thin idea.However the movie did work for me as both a funny short and a intelligent one. I took it to be an expression of the artist John Smith's desire to control everything that he sees through his camera and that his 'direction' here is practically his ideal working situation! He wants everything just as he wants it but, as he shows here, the only method he is going to receive that is by narration over movie he has already shot. It was a intelligent and interesting concept and this carried me to the end of the short even if the laughs had worn out – contemplating this was the main target I suspect and it achieved it and more!Overall, like other review has snootily observed, very several folks has seen this short movie and it is a shame because it is sublime in its simplicity. As a comedy, the one-joke approach doesn't have the legs to last 10 mins but as an expression of Smith's constructive frustration that things never go quite how he wants them to, this is nice stuff. I started the short laughing here and there but ended it in thought about how it gotta be difficult for directors and artists to ever really place on canvas/film/video the vision that they truly have in their minds' eye. An clever and funny short!


Perfect short film. In addition to previous comments, I'd like to add that the The Woman Chewing Gum should be seen as a visual rendering of the ubiquitous and unanswerable question whether "art imitates life" or "life imitates art".The question this movie now poses, seems to be if reality exists in itself (that is, independent of something like culture, emotion, our actions in it, etc), which implies that we, human beings that we are, can never really touch upon it (that we are mere spectators) - or that reality is the product of man's intervening in it, the product of our relations with it and the actions we make.In another words: does the woman chew her gum because she is "a woman chewing gum" (existing independently from her on screen appearance), or is she chewing her gum for the sole reason that she is being perceived chewing (by the camera, and by us)?


As the short of jean-luc Godart, "Charlotte et son jules" (1960), or "the large shave" (1967) of scorsese, this short film won the "famous" Oberhausen festival.Yes, remember, in 1962, 26 movie-makers rated a proclamation at Oberhausen to create the German film industry more modern and to tell good-bye to the old-german-movie-style...So after that, a sort of "new-wave" appeared (in 68 for instance, Hellmut Costard made sensation with his short where folks should see a talking-penis...that's maybe not the more interesting film that had been maid, but it was a step for the expression freedom...). And this year, the festival have 50 years old...and revealed a lot of fresh talent during this period (Zbigniew Rybczinski, the french Michel Gondry, the britain John Smith, the americans Laura Wadddington and Kenneth Anger...and that's in Oberhausen too that the first short of Roman Polanski were projected)So that's in that environnement that "the woman chewing-gum" was projected in 1976...and, as a lot of film of this festival, this one have a total liberty of narration. With a funny "british-touch" the director build the film as he wants it to be (in a strict sense)...a rare curiosity that had to be seen as "the large shave" or so many...



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